Title: Land & livestock
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00089229/00002
 Material Information
Title: Land & livestock livestock, pasture and forages, wildlife habitat, farm ponds, and small farm enterprises
Series Title: Land & livestock livestock, pasture and forages, wildlife habitat, farm ponds, and small farm enterprises
Physical Description: Serial
Creator: Hillsborough County Extension Office, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Affiliation: University of Florida -- Seffner, Fla. -- Florida Cooperative Extension Service
Publisher: Hillsborough County Extension Office, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Seffner, Fla.
Publication Date: April/May 2006
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00089229
Volume ID: VID00002
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.


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University of Florida IFAS Extension and
Hillsborough County, FL


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Upcoming Events

FL Cattle Auctions
Weekly Summary

Beef Management

Mare Reproductive
Loss Syndrome

EDIS Publications

Not Just "Organic"

The Bird Flu

Emerging Weeds

Multi-species Grazing

UF Plant City Campus

Small Farms Website

S-. -

Dear Friends,
Since you will receive this issue as hurricane season is fast
2 approaching, I would be remiss if I didn't mention a few things.
During the 2005 hurricane season livestock, including cattle,
3 horses and poultry succumbed to floodwater, high winds, and
other effects from the storms. In fact, the Department of Agri-
culture reported that an estimated 10,000 cattle died or were
3 misplaced after Hurricane Katrina. As livestock owners, we
don't have many options in preparing for the storms, but mak-
ing sure our animals are identified is critical. Our fencelines
are often knocked down by trees or sustain other damage al-
lowing livestock out of the pastures. Other than identifying
4 your animals, here are a few other tips:

>Take an inventory of your livestock-count your animals be-
fore the storm.
> Move machinery, feed, grain, pesticides and herbicides to
higher ground.
> Construct mounds of soil for livestock, or open gates so live-
stock can escape high water.
> Leave building doors and windows open at least 2 inches to
equalize water pressure and help prevent buildings from
>If possible, move motors and portable electric equipment to
a dry location.
> Disconnect electric power to all buildings which may be
> Check with a veterinarian to be sure cattle are properly im-
munized before being exposed to flood waters.
> To keep surface water out of your well, use materials such as
heavy plastic and duct tape to seal the well cap and top of
the well casing.

i ., -_

H I 1,. ,,

SUpcoming Events

28th Annual Goat Production
Sat.. & Sun., June 10,11
UF Vet School
Gainesville, FL

Florida Cattlemen's Associa-
tion Annual Convention &
Trade Show
June 20-22
Marco Island, FL

1st Annual Deer & Turkey
e Short Course and Trade Show
August 18, 2006
Arcadia, FL

Grazing Management School
& Tour
September 28-29, 2006
Wauchula, FL

2nd Annual Quail Manage-
mnent Short Course
October 5-6, 2006
Monticello, FL

Cattlemen's Institute & Allied
Trade Show
January 18, 2007
Kissimmee, FL

*Dates& Locations are
subject to change

Page 2


USDA-FL, Florida Cattle Auctions Weekly Summary

At the Florida Livestock Auctions (Fri April 28, 2006); Cattle receipts at 9 markets; Ocala, Wau-
chula, Okeechobee, Lakeland, Webster, Ellisville, Arcadia, Madison and Lake City, receipts totaled
5,265 compared to 5,673 last week, and 8,030 last year. According to the Florida Federal-State Live-
stock Market News Service: Compared to one week ago, slaughter cows steady to 2.00 higher, bulls
1.00 to 3.00 higher, feeder steers and heifers 2.00 to 5.00 lower, replacement cows 2.00 to 3.00
higher. Flesh condition: thin and very thin.

Feeder Steers & Bulls: Medium and Large 1-2 200-245 Ibs $165.00-195.00; 250-290 Ibs &130.00-
175.00; 300-345 Ibs $128.00-147.50; 350-395 Ibs $116.00-133.00; 400-445 Ibs $114.00-129.00;
450-495 Ibs $106.00-126.00; 500-545 Ibs $100.00-115.00; 550-597 Ibs $98.00-114.00; 610-645
Ibs $93.00-110.00;718-718 Ibs $89.00-89.00 Medium and Large 2-3 200-245 Ibs $125.00-170.00;
250-297 Ibs $120.00-156.00; 300-345 Ibs $116.00-141.00; 350-395 Ibs $104.00-125.00; 400-445
Ibs $100.00-122.00; 450-499 Ibs $89.00-116.00; 500-545 Ibs 90.00-107.00; 550-590 Ibs $85.00-
105.00; 615-640 Ibs $84.00-99.00 Feeder Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2 200-245 Ibs $140.00-
170.00; 250-295 Ibs $125.00-150.00; 300-345 Ibs $119.00-136.00; 350-395 Ibs $110.00-126.00;
400-445 Ibs $104.00-119.00; 450-495 Ibs 98.00-118.00; 500-546 Ibs $96.00-115.00; 550-595 Ibs
$94.00-109.00; 625-630 Ibs $90.00-90.00 Medium and Large 2-3 200-245 Ibs $115.00-145.00; 250-
295 Ib $119.00-140.00; 300-349 Ibs $108.00-129.00; 350-395 Ibs $102.00-118.00; 400-440 Ibs
$92.00-116.00; 450-495 Ibs $85.00-106.00; 500-545 $83.00-104.00; 555-595 Ibs $75.00-91.00;

Beef Management Calendar

* Plant warm season annual pastures
* Check and fill mineral feeder
* Check dust bags or apply treated ear tags
* Check for external parasites and treat if neces-
* Observe cows for repeat breeders
* Deworm cows as needed if not done in March
* Vaccinate against blackleg and brucellosis be-
tween 3-12 months of age
* Give shipping shots to early born calves: IBR,
BVD, P13 plus Lepto, Blackleg, Deworm, weigh
* Market cull calves and bulls
* Update market information and refine market
strategy for calves

* Plant warm season perennial pastures
* Fertilize warm season pastures

* Check mineral feeder
* Check for spittlebugs & treat if necessary
* Apply spot-on agents for grub & louse control
* Check dust bags
* Vaccinate and implant with growth stimulant any
later calves
* Remove bulls May 21st to end calving season
March 1st


Page 3

Mare Reproductive Loss Syndrome (MRLS)

..We have experienced 2 confirmed cases of MRLS in Alachua
SCounty, Florida (Gainesville), and 1 in Marion County, FL. MRLS has
been linked to the consumption of Eastern Tent caterpillars, ETC
S-C;,! s- (+-photo). They prefer wild cherry, apple and crabapple. The clini-
'r cal syndromes include early pregnancy loss, late-term abortions,
foals born weak and septic, pericarditis, uveitis, laminitis, and oral
ulceration. During 2001 and 2002, Kentucky experienced a sub-
l L- stantial loss in their foal crop, estimated at 30%, which is thought
to be due at least partially to the mares' consumption of the caterpillars. After the consumption of
the ETC, spines of the caterpillar pierce the intestinal lining and introduce gastrointestinal bacteria
(principally, Streptococcus spp) into the bloodstream. These bacteria are delivered to the placenta
and the developing embryo or fetus. Abortion associated with MRLS has ranged from 45 gestation
to full term.
Currently, the UF College of Veterinary Medicine recommends that all abortions and foal deaths
receive a post-mortem evaluation. The only way to protect the pregnant mare is to remove her
from contact with the caterpillars. For more information, please consult the university of Kentucky
web page on MRLS at www.ca.uky.edu/gluck/mrls/index.htm or The Horse: Your Guide to Equine
Health Care at www.thehorse.com

EDIS is the Electronic Data Information
Source of UF/IFAS Extension
New Relevant EDIS Publications
EDIS Homepage: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu
* AN163: Select the Sex of Your Next Calf Prior to Mating: Using Sexed Semen,
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/AN1 63
* SP-51: Insect Management Guide, Livestock Pests (vol.1, Ch. 3)
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/TOPIC GUIDE IG Livestock
* ENY255: External Parasites Around Animal Facilities
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IG054 [rev.]
* ENY270: Cattle Grubs
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IG1 26 [rev.]
* ENY273: External Parasites of Sheep and Goats ...
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IG1 29 [rev.]
* ENY273: External Parasites of Sheep and Goats
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IG129 [rev.] .
* ENY286: Northern Fowl Mite
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IG141 [rev.]
* ENY287: External Parasites on Swine
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IG138 [rev.]
* ENY271: Cattle Tail Lice' : ".
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IG127 [rev.]
Wea;rfnegs at the LF Horse Teachrlng Vtnit
* ENY274: External Parasites on Beef Cattle
http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IG130 [rev.]


Page 4


With increased costs of operating the ranch,
decreased returns of commodity beef and the in-
ability to compete with large scale producers, the
additional scrutiny that faces land owners, and
the pressures from many environmental groups,
it's a wonder what we raise cattle in Hillsborough
County at all. It's a continual effort to keep the
beef industry viable for our smaller producers and
'niche' markets may be worth looking into.

As we emphasized at our Small Farms Confer-
ence back in March, no matter the size of your
herd, every effort should be made to realize a pri-
vate. Hard work and increasing production may
no longer be enough to sustain a profitable opera-
tion. Tailoring production methods to meet the
changing needs of consumers is one option in an
effort to remain competitive. For example, while
sound science agrees that the use of preserva-
tives, pesticides, and hormones, when used in a
judicious manner maintain wholesomeness of
meat products, there is an increasing number of
consumers who are willing to pay for products
without them. A growing number of American con-
sumers are demanding beef products that are
produced under 'natural' conditions and even
look for meat with labels reflecting humane treat-
ment of animals during the production phase.
These specialty beef product lines are rapidly
gaining market share and may become a viable
marketing option for cattle producers in Florida.
As a beef producer, being aware of your produc-
tion goals and your values, and taking the time to
weigh the benefits of increased market access
and premium prices with the challenges of a pos-
sible loss of production efficiencies and a cur-

rently limited infrastructure in Florida to get the
cattle to the end user, will be critical. For exam-
ple, acknowledging that while Organic Beef pro-
duction may sound like an exciting venture, it will
require more government oversight and an or-
ganically certified slaughtering/processing facility,
which does not yet exist in the state.
The following explanations of "Natural,"
"Organic," and other labels, such as, "Animal Pro-
duction Claims," will help you begin to investigate
other production and marketing strategies.
Who Determines/Authorizes the Label?
-Ultimately, the USDA, through the Food Safety
Inspection Service (FSIS). This entity is responsi-
ble for upholding the food labeling integrity; in
other words, they ensure that the claims are truth-
ful and not misleading to the consumer.
-However, while the term "Natural" is managed
and enforced by FSIS, the term "Organic" is man-
aged and enforced through the USDA Agricultural
Marketing Service through third party certifying
agencies. One is example is Quality Certification
Services, located in Gainesville, FL. Other agen-
cies can be found at:
What does 'Natural' Mean?
* "Natural" is reserved for items that contain no
artificial ingredients, coloring ingredients, or
chemical preservatives; and are minimally
* These criteria only apply to the physical meat
product and in no way does it refer to how the
animal was produced. Therefore, the use of
hormones, pesticides, or antibiotics are not
included in the USDA definition of "Natural."
What does "Organic" Mean?
* The term 'organic' is restricted to those items
that were produced under the National Or-
ganic Standards as set by the Agricultural Mar-
keting Service under the National Organic pro-

Page 5


* Requirements for Organic livestock production are divided into subject-specific categories, in-
cluding: land use soil fertility and crop nutrient management origin of livestock livestock
feed* livestock health care* livestock living conditions
* Some requirements include, but are not limited to the following:
-For a livestock producer to attain "Organic" status, his/her land must not be treated with
herbicides, pesticides, commercial fertilizer, or other synthetic compounds for a period no
Less than 3 years
-Additionally, livestock must be handled as organic from the last 3rd of gestation (or hatch
ing, in poultry)
-All feed used for growing and finishing livestock must be organically grown and must not
contain urea, mammalian or poultry by-products, hormones, or antibiotics (however, the
producer may not withhold medical treatment to sick livestock to maintain organic status)
-Vaccinations are okay
-Livestock must have access to outdoors and provided with shade, exercise areas, fresh air,
and direct sunlight
* It is the job of the Organic Certifying Agency to work with the producer to make sure that all re-
quirements are met Information adapted from Natural-Organic-Grass fed Beef Cattle Definitions and Regulations,
presented by Terry Houser at the 2006 FL Beef Cattle Shortcourse

Somewhere in the Middle
Here is something to consider. Most, if not all, Florida cow/calf producers are already producing
'natural' beef since this doesn't become an issue until the animal is processed. It does have value,
however, if the producer is finishing out his cattle on grass and supplying a local market. Many peo-
ple are looking for local products to feed their family. The increase in food safety issues such as BSE
(Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy) or mad cow disease, and consumer interest in the increased
health benefits (Omega 3 vs. Omega 6 Fatty Acids, and others) of grassfed beef may bring even
more opportunities for small, local producers. While finishing an animal simply on Florida forage is a
challenge in itself, a 'Natural, Grassfed' label should bring a premium without the producer having
to meet the stricter standards of "Organic" beef.
Therefore, along with the relatively easy to attain "Natural" label, other animal production deci-
sions may allow the beef to be eligible for multiple labeling that consumers are willing to pay a pre-
mium for. Some examples are "Raised Without Added Hormones," "Grassfed," "Free Range,"
"Raised in an Open Pasture," "Fed an All Vegetable Diet," etc. These are called "Animal Production
Claims" and are regulated and enforced by FSIS rather than certified by a third party (as they are for
organic). Instead, a producer is required to sign a testimonial as to the production claim in question.
If you are considering dabbling in the local and/or grassfed market, know your customers. For
example, the idea of grassfed beef may sound good, but make sure you and your potential custom-
ers have tasted it. Perhaps more importantly, make sure you cook it correctly because that makes
all the difference with grassfed beef. Being small, you can educate your customers on how to cook
different cuts. Cuts...another thing to consider. With planning, you can proportion customers to
match how you cut up the carcass and not be forced to sell for a lower price just to get rid of all your
beef. Along with any new enterprise comes risk, so the more research you do on the process of rais-
ing cows for a local market, including grazing systems, slaughtering, packaging, labeling, and adver-
tising, the better off you'll be.


Page 6


What is the Bird Flu?

* Avian Influenza (Al)-or the "bird flu" is a disease caused by a virus that
infects domestic poultry, wild birds (like quail, cranes, geese, and ducks)
and pet birds like parrots.
* Each yr., there is a bird flu season just as there is with humans
* Strains are divided into low pathogenicity (LP) and high pathogenicity
(HP). LP has existed in the US since the early 1900s and poses no serious
threat to human health

S* HP is often fatal in birds and is more easily transmitted. It is the type
currently detected in parts of Asia and E. Europe, among people who had
extensive, direct contact with infected birds.
* HP has been detected 3 times in the US: 1924, 1983, and 2004; no significant human illness resulted form
these outbreaks
* In 2004, USDA confirmed an outbreak in chickens in the southern US. USDA, state and local industry leaders
responded quickly with a quarantine and culling of birds, limiting the disease to this one flock
* HP can be spread from birds to people as a result of extensive direct contact with infected birds
* Broad concerns about public health relate to the potential for the virus to mutate into a form that could
spread from person to person
* The US Dept. of Health and Human Services is aggressively working with a team of federal, state, and indus-
try partners to ensure public health is protected

USDA recommends the following biosecurity practices for producers to follow in order to prevent the
introduction of Avian Influenza into their flocks:
-Keep an "all-in, all-out" philosophy of flock management (In other words, don't co-mingle)
-Process each lot of birds separately and clean and disinfect poultry houses between flocks
-Prevent poultry flocks from coming into contact with wild or migratory birds, including sharing same water source
-Permit only essential workers and vehicles to enter the farm & clean vehicles returning from other farms
-Change footwear and clothing before working with your own flock after visiting another farm or live-bird market
-Do not bring birds from slaughter channels, especially those from live-bird markets, back to the farm
-If Al is detected, farms must be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. Al is inactivated by heat and drying and it is also
very sensitive to most disinfectants and detergents
If you detect sick birds with the following symptoms, please report them to: 1-866-536-7593

* Sudden death, Diarrhea
* Decreased or complete loss of egg production, soft-shelled, misshapen eggs
* Sneezing, gasping for air, nasal discharge, coughing
* Lack of energy and appetite
* Swelling of tissues around eyes and in neck
* Purple discoloration of the wattles, combs and legs
* Depression, muscular tremors, drooping wings, twisting of head and neck, in coordination,
complete paralysis


Page 7

Scout Pastures for Emerging Weeds I

Control of Annual Weeds

Emerg. Seed. Veg. Flower Mat.

Diagram courtesy of Dr Jay Ferrell, UF Weed Science Specialist

Once the weed starts putting energy toward pro-
ducing fruit and seeds, all the translocation is di-
rected toward the above ground vegetation and the
herbicide won't be effective. Therefore, you should
time the spraying of an annual to be as soon as you
see it emerging, and when there is rain. That is right
about now, so scout your pastures!

This is the prime time to get rid of
those emerging summer annual
weeds that you see popping up
(pigweed, chamberbitter, ragweed,
crabgrass, cocklebur, coffeeweed,
etc.). They emerge in the spring and
mature before winter, setting seed
and dying within 12 months or less.

The entire purpose of an annual
plant is to set seed as soon as pos-
sible to allow for propagation from
germinating seeds the following
year. The faster it goes to seed, the
more likely that it will survive. If it
never gets to the seed setting stage,
it is 'extinct' so to speak, unlike a
perennial whose underground root
system sustains it through dor-

The trick to applying systemic (vs.
contact) herbicides, such as 2,4D,
is to apply when the plant is actively
moving water and nutrients (process
called translocation) to its roots.
When you spray the herbicide, it is
also translocated to the roots, where
it needs to be in order to kill the
weed. Obviously if there is a
drought, the weed is not doing much
translocation of anything (since
there is no water) so the efficacy of
the herbicide can greatly be re-
duced. The diagram shows that the
effectiveness of the herbicide de-
creases from the emergence stage
through to maturity, when it sets

Page 8



Looking for a way to increase your forage utilization,
get more pounds of gain per acre, and control weeds?
You might want to consider multi-species grazing.
Check out the benefits of adding goats to cattle pas-
1.) Improving Total Carrying Capacity- Adding one
goat per cow to a pasture that contains some
weeds/browse will control competition from weedy
species, result in all types of plants being eaten
(greater forage utilization), and extra animals/meat to
sell. Cattle and goats only exhibit an 8% overlap in
forage preference*, so they will hardly be in competi-
tion for the same plants and the pastures will benefit
from more even grazing.
2.) Diversification of Species results in Diversification of Income Sources
3.) Weed Control- You know the photo of "Pig Weed" on the previous page? Well, goats would be
happy to make that part of their diet. When that weed is in its vegetative stage, it's been found to con-
tain 24% Crude Protein*! Goats prefer browsing on brush and shrubs, followed by broadleaf weeds.

Before After

Remember that there are management issues specific to goats that do have to be consid-
ered. Some factors including fencing, parasites, and susceptibility to predators. Electric
fence is often a good option and if cattle fencing is already in place, stringing off-set wires in-
site the fence about 8" and 12-14" above ground (with voltage maintained at 4,500 volts or
better) has been effective. You may opt to use a guard animal, such as a Great Pyrenes or
other s. Your county extension agent can provide you with more information on predator con-

*Figures provided by Dr. Will Getz, Small Ruminant Extension Specialist, Fort Valley State University



Page 9

The Plant City Campus of the University of Florida/IFAS, partnering
with Hillsborough County Community College (HCC) and the IF/IFAS
Gulf Coast Research and Education Center (in Balm), is located on
the HCC Plant City campus off Park Rd and offers the following
Agricultural Education-prepares students to be certified agriscience instructors and educational special-
ists; Students gain broad knowledge about agriculture and agribusiness. Additionally, students are
equipped with expertise in technical agriculture via courses in animal science, horticulture, crop and soil
science, entomology, food science, agricultural mechanization and agribusiness.
Natural Resource Conservation-This major blends science, nature, environment, and economics and
provides an opportunity for students to develop a personalized curriculum according to their specific inter-
ests within the field of natural resources.
"The Natural Resource Conservation program at the UFPlant City campus is an adventure. This pro-
gram is designed to be hands-on, including a lot of field trips and field work. Through this adven-
ture, you will learn your strengths and weaknesses. The professors will challenge you and push for
great results in everything you will do." -Student

This program is not just for the average college student. Many professionals, from the South Flor-
ida Water Management District and Florida Division of Forestry, for example, enroll in this program
and bring their valuable information into the classroom to share with the rest of us. It's added
knowledge that we would not have gained otherwise." -Student
Environmental Horticulture- This is a field of study concerned with the art and science of breeding,
propagating, installing and maintaining plants that are used to inhance and improve the human environ-
ment. Graduates have a well-rounded background that prepares them for professional positions in a rap-
idly expanding and exciting industry.
"Having the opportunity to go to school here has been the best thing that could ever happen to me."
For more information, visit: http://gcrec.ifas.ufl.edu/pcc or call 813-707-7330.

SAlternative Enterprises IFASEXTENN

* Small farms represent over 90% of all farms in FL and the number of small farms is increasing
* Input from counties throughout Florida identified the need for small farm educational programs
* Programs addressing the needs of small-scale farmers are particularly relevant in Hillsborough County, where
over 75% of our farms and ranches are 50 acres or less in size and about 1/3 of them are smaller than 10
* Along with the various 'Alternative Agricultural Enterprise' workshops being held in the region,
please visit this website for current information for small farmers:
Website: http://smallfarms.ifas.ufl.edu/


Page 10

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